tv Russian Hacking CSPAN January 12, 2018 11:01am-12:03pm EST
good morning, ladies and gentlemen. i am isabella, welcome to the wilson center. toill use the moment advertise our upcoming event that will happen next week on friday, january 19th, 10:30 to 12:00. we will have a book talk, the ukrainian night and intimate history of revolution. speaking will be the author of the book, associate professor of history at yale university as well as a former wilson center -- as during i will also well as a former wilson center fellow. i will also take the opportunity to ask you to follow us on twitter and facebook. read our twoure to excellent blogs. and theses on russia other focuses on ukraine.
today's event, all you need to know about russian hackers. we are pleased to have a speaker who is here with us for a few months as an expert at the canon institute and an eight investigative journalist -- and an investigative journalist based in moscow, russia. at theted his career biggest russian news website at the time. after the editor in chief was fired by the publisher on political grounds he left of the publication along with most of its reporters and editors. focuses of his reporting on the refugee writess in russia, lgbt in russia, cyber security, and the islamic state. he got the gq award in journalism for his reporting about isis.
his works have been cited in the new york times, the new yorker, and other respected western publications. he was also the recipient of the most prestigious award in russian journalism today. the founder of the award also happens to be a fellow at canon. we are pleased we have such a strong representation of russian independent journalists. >> thank you. hello, everyone. it is great to see you here. .'m a reporter
now in december after three years of working we have around 10 million unique visitors in the month. i specialized in bacon narrative big narrative stories, stories about isis , how moscowsia workers became islamic state fighters. another topic is lgbt programs in russia and radical groups against lgbt like this story. years i've worked in stories about russian hackers
, russian hacking activities against russia, all of this stuff. about how article russian security services recruit guys from around the country for the russian cyber army. now in the canon institute i'm working on a book about the history of russian hackers from the soviet days to our days. today i will tell you some stories about that. i did not want to talk a lot about russian hacking in the american election because you read a lot about this. want to talk about russian hackers and their connections to the government. elsewhere -- sometimes a big
cyber weapons. this.eny when she turned down the offer, that is when problems begin. she was followed by secret services and that is why she went to finland. we met this year for a few months ago. he has changed his name and gotten political asylum in in and and is now working company monitoring hacking elections around the world. this is a rare case where the interest of the russian state
and security services to cyber warfare came into public safe with real names and real ideas. , russian years officials have made many statements from which we can understand. russia has already its own cyber army. in the structure of security services and the minister of -- hacking and searching . , the defense minister spokesman said russia is developing technologies for conducting cyber war. years, in mywo research and meetings with russian hackers, that showed
that hackers and the corporations, the governments, based on two lines. this is a professional selection and a criminal selection. selection includes -- can we turn off the lights, please? competitions where the young programmers around the country compete with each other in programming and coding. withevent is popular security guards because they come to this competition and offer the work.
there are school programming camps in summers and winters when school programmers come from russia. way to recruit in the moscow screw -- in the moscow school is a circle in theg programmers military, which proclaims its goal is to train specialists for security agencies. there are stories about how it is great to work.
this is how programmers begin to prepare in schools. it was organized by the teacher of computer sciences. he pointed out that the project was created in order to relieve of source -- all sorts s who support the american way of life. the other way in professional isection of hackers [indiscernible] in 2013, the russian defense minister spoke to the university directors at the meeting in
i can translate some of the words from this video. graduated from college, if you're a technical specialist, if you're ready to use your knowledge, we give you an opportunity. members live and comfortable accommodation with apartments furnished with a washing machine, also. in the spring of 2014, the -- ther of defense defense forces of information operations for cybernetic confrontation. they were created -- graduated
from technical universities, mathematicians, engineers, began to go there. they indicated their knowledge of programming languages and one of the teachers of this center explains that the main task of our guys is to learn the methods of cyber attacks. had to work out operations of cyber attacks in order to use them. one of the documents laid out in the community of scientific -- indicate that the youth -- vulnerable networks and software. [indiscernible]
the representative of the minister of defense called me and said the agency does not show them to anyone and does not telling one about them and told me that this topic is closed. not -- putuote, do yourself aside. the television defense channels -- [indiscernible] the joke sounds like for every -- the science quadrants have also been graded.
theve a document from minister of defense a photo of theiers and indicated target is develop an of special software. this is a district in moscow. russian hackers was born here. he is a good example for hackers destiny in russia now days. he got interested in hacking when he was 13, in the early 2000's.
his computer was too weak to play video games, so he had to find something else to do. classmates had started creating websites and his friendsessons would pass them a notebook and he would write out the html code by hand. this turned out to be inventive. it was not long before he got interested in hacking, he told me. he and his friends started hacking classmates websites. eventually the friend lost interest in hacking, but anton's interest only grew. he registered an account with the russian hacking firm where
people -- with a russian hacking forum where people discuss cyber security news. this forum had several different levels and you get access to different levels by demonstrating your programming knowledge. anton got to know several other young hackers and within a few years it would become the best cyber security specialists in russia while others would begin getting money illegally. some people would end in american prisons. [indiscernible]
he told me that the hackers hide from police in safehouses across the country. he told that he knows about a few cases when police arrested and took the suspects away. this is not your business. one of the russian cyber thattigators told me once ,fter the end of the cold war espionage did not end in russia. in russia there is an intelligence force whose job is to extract information. it is not a secret that the most effective way to do this is technology.
-- in particular the hacking of the national committee of the democratic party in the united states and the correspondence of hillary clinton and military objects in the united states. he did not provide any proof in support of this confession. some observers and me said he was insane. others that he was desperately trying to save himself with such publicity. if hee key question -- or heying to make a deal, has already made it in the past like many other hackers. there are stories about russian hackers.
some stories will be in my book. russian hacking activities against the russian government. thank you. [applause] thank you, so much. i am sure members of our audience have lots of question. i want to ask you a couple questions. you made a distinction between the professional selection of hackers and hackers who work with facilities, so that is a criminal selection. is there a link between these that they can be separate or how does it mix or interact? mr. turovsky: it is one world, and professional section and
criminal section are the guys are working with government. >> what are the chances of you -- and you alluded to it -- you said it was very likely that -- will go out of control and in the future. as it happened, do we know about it, and is the likelihood of the people who were trained to work on behalf of the russian government would turn against it and use the tools and go in the other direction? we havevsky: in russia, a lead story of russian hackers against the government. i think someone -- will share --ut the at group of hackers will share about the group of , around three years.
but now they have all been jailed. other stories, a but the russia, also -- , theyn hacker community --e a [indiscernible] because if you works in russia -- work in russia, you will and in jail. >> if you are discovered. mr. turovsky: because in russia, there are a lot of -- of ambiguity of political departments. -- ande really good in
they want to find these hackers. >> ok. let's turn to the audience for some questions. i think there is a question right there. just a second. will there be a mike coming your way? >> hi. over the last couple of months, there was discussion about commercially available software that was used to introduce vulnerabilities into the systems that were using that software. do you have information on that? that --vsky: i know ski have a lotper -- but i know kasperski has a
and they guys inside work in hack positions at kasperky toe -- at make some decisions with this company. >> thank you. abouter if you could talk one of them more well-known hacks in russia, a personal account,-- a personal and i think they got someone else, if i am not mistaken. is there anything new about who hast have done that, and it
an example of real-world effects that played into the opposition mobilization and protest against the government. mr. turovsky: [indiscernible] >> just recently. medvedev?ky: --the speakers were able to [indiscernible] mr. turovsky: yeah. --or event -- midget of --get of -- medvedev [indiscernible] howestion about hackers operate with oppositions -- >> [indiscernible] but then there was the real-world if it aired when that
became public as a motivational tool to -- we have not seen that level of protests since -- [indiscernible] mr. turovsky: yeah. thinkare some groups, i some of these groups were working in government who -- -- fromve administration president, a.p., in russia we would say. his name is -- in the russian administration. figure -- internet. investigations
who makeshe was a man these decisions to have some positions like -- or some other guys in russia. [indiscernible] -- hacked some positions his name is -- and now think he is in jail in germany. >> i will follow up on that question. if i understood it correctly, a follow-up question, the video that you were referring to, when they sent it, they sent a drone to take it. that is not hacking. their research was not based on
hacking, but based on journalistic -- research of their record of -- that were available online. i am wondering -- i do not know -- are there hackers who work with the russian opposition? if that is something that happens? mr. turovsky: [indiscernible] >> ok. clarify -- thank you. but they had mr. witt nedved dvedev's account, and were able to corroborate pictures of him in public fora wearing those exact items and the items which they worship two, which is not information. it was obtained through hacking. mr. turovsky: i do not know. >> we have two more questions.
we will take those. >> hi. i'm a graduate student at georgetown. my questions might seem basic, but you said if you hack in russia, you will either join the government or go to jail. do you find that the hackers that are sent to jail, just like the adage there is no such thing as a drug-free prison, no such thing as a prison without hackers, do you think it is an effective solution to jail hackers, and doesn't have any onl impact on their impact their goals with her projects? does jailing these hackers have any effects on the curbing the hacking situation? mr. turovsky: yeah.
this is a big question how jail -- how people -- yes, and we have in russia a lot of stories when hackers go to jail, and we have a lot of stories when hackers -- when on securityworking services because they will not go into jail. >> because they want to or because -- mr. turovsky: they want to. >> what happens if they go to jail? can they maybe continue hacking? mr. turovsky: no. >> they do not, so they do not have access. ok. >> intevac, we have two back, we -- in some have two questions. >> could you clarify, please, when the government outreach to
hackers began. -- a coupleifferent different dates and authorities. could you give us an estimate since that day how many hackers the government has recruited and who their primary targets are? thank you. mr. turovsky: yeah. i talked about -- and as i know there is some people working inside -- around the country. and your question is about main , that i do not know, but like in this american election, hacking, we can talk here about motivation for these hackers.
maybe espionage around guy, everyry, every journalist who runs a -- a target as i know from the a.p. investigation. journalist experts, political people -- >> i am sorry. when would you say this government recruiting really began with intensity? mr. turovsky: began? >> yeah, to get these folks to help. mr. turovsky: three years, i think. >> thank you. >> ok, there was one question in the back. we take that and move forward from there. >> hi. you mentioned but the criminal and professional hacking
organizations, how they were recruited. are the type of hacking activity -- and you may have talked about example, for certain types of hacking activities more oriented from the criminal base rather than the professional? for example the criminal base may be a good type of to use for certain activities and use plausible deniability where it could be traced back to the government. mr. turovsky: yeah. --i know, professional popular -- criminal hackers are good --
because they need to have a lot of time to explore and find a lot of abilities. >> ok, i think we had right there. mm-hmm. >> thank you very much for your presentation. i'm a journalist and a research center at johns hopkins university. a brief question. earlyil was hacked in 2014. could you please explain about this organization, and why my emails were released? probably they work with government. they check the ground and spread it to other countries? thank you very much. mr. turovsky: as i think you will be an efficient tech
target, yes? >> efficient? >> what kind of attacks? >> no, they just collected. it is interesting, because we project and it was at the beginning of a revolution. it was a year before it started. but they tried to connect it as we were -- then that was behind the financial part of our organization, and we were among those who organized. broke --lly they and use theseit emails. in their understanding, it was
-- cyberberg is a famous part of russian --, i think . they hacked a lot of ukrainian reporters whome work in ukraine. one, i think you know him. conflicting intelligence organizations who investigate russian connections. of russians a part hacking groups, but i do not defensiveis is a means -- sorry.
>> i am curious, if you talk about it, do these groups sort of receive a team assignment? your group is going to work on ukrainian journalists and bloggers. are they kept disconnected and separate, because the more you connect the information -- how does a work? mr. turovsky: all the russian cyber army and these groups are really separated. there's no one -- to go out there -- clinton said -- --of universities in the beginning of last year, -- by their own faults.
>> so that recruiting picture they solve, they had the guys sitting --it does not work that way. mr. turovsky: no. >> right there, in the middle. thank you. think for your presentation. i have a couple of questions, very briefly. first, something that you edited -- dilutedly through to, especially through criminal -- the question of the allegiances of these hackers. if more control seems to have it at the point of a gun. are there any high-ranking fbi officers or a hierarchy who are experts in hacking themselves in order to be able to know what these hackers are doing? how does that supervision happened, because to me the
sense of even though they are working on a project of working for the russian government, they are very skilled to also create some sort of admission on -- from the south. i do not know if you have a sense from that how that works. focusing ons, russian hackers who are located in russia itself, or all over the world? have you gotten a sense of geographic scope of where they are, because you do not have to be in the same room. thank you. mr. turovsky: russian hackers, in ukraineys who -- and belarus and afghanistan, i think. -- kazakhstan, i think. will you repeat the first question, please. >> how they are supervised?
if you are a supervisor, you have to be an expert. i think you know department which is where -- i do not know how -- >> do it in russian. mr. turovsky: might be center of information security. they are a lot of experts are good in these things, and some , investigations, working with hackers. workingwho as we know
with -- this got him his nickname is -- -- from lot of big early 1990's, i think. 25th year, middle of he became -- expert. >> and so the reason that the ukraine,ften sit in belarus, on him is that to create a cover up? mr. turovsky: it is not because they work in ukraine. >> ok, i think we had a question right there. we have three questions in a row here, so let's go one after the other. >> thank you. i want to come back to the part of your presentation when you spoke about -- schedules.
they were established by the minister of defense, and they were advertised as a specialty department. they also received a good technical education that would be -- computer-based research and so on. and you say that they possibly might take part in hacking attacks as well. and the rest of your speech, you spoke about hacking attacks of those who want to -- know iftion is, do you it was proved that different hacker attacks or different cyber threats were produced by these research squadrons? mr. turovsky: thank you. it is a really difficult question because it is not
really test it is really attack -- it is here canicult, and we only talk about motivation, not facts about attacks from ministry of defense or -- >> what do you mean? mr. turovsky: russian secret services to attack some political experts war hacking , do not really -- there.the lady behind >> thank you. i have a question about process. you are a journalist working with meduza.
it is based in latvia outside of russia. i wonder, what is it like for you to work as a journalist on these topics, and what see as the role of these kind of peru three countries -- periphery countries as a base for russian independent journalism? mr. turovsky: yeah, thank you. riga, latvia,d in but i live in moscow. we are writing about russian -- i do not litter, i do not understand anything. this topic -- i do not live here, i do not understand anything this topic is difficult in russia, but in every country. most of the time of my reporting on this is wait, wait, wait, to tell meme guy
that he would need to talk with this guy. -- and i would agree it is a difficult topic for everyone, but what we hear russia,at happens in how hard it is to be an independent journalist, do you find -- do you ever feel it is actually dangerous for you to do? mr. turovsky: no. if you go to chechnya or lgbt topics, it is dangerous when you have meetings with radical groups. know what they think about this investigation, and the response is guy from
minister of defense who called that you do not need to investigate. only response from the government. >> ok, we had a question right here. if you could wait for the mike. >> hello. thank you for being here. my name is constantine. it is very it seems polarized in terms of when people think about russia's meddling or suppose it meddling in the election, and you write for an opposition media source. do you think based on evidence, what is your opinion based on -- what of the role of was the role, the extent of the role of russian meddling in this lection from -- in this election
from dnc hacking, to the dossier on trump? so what is your opinion as of the rights for an opposition source, and yet obviously in russia, people who are supporting putin, they think it is ridiculous or preposterous. so what is your own view of russia's extent of russia's involvement or meddling? um --rovsky: thank you. i do not really want to talk about this, because you have your opinion about this, and you read a lot of articles about this. fact inon will be in what i know, what i investigate. -- russian hackers
hacked bill clinton emails -- hillary clinton emails. russia hasse, motivation to do this, and has the ability to do this, with the russian cyber army, cyber hackers, who are the greatest in the world. that is my opinion. >> i will also say, and i do not know what you would say about it, we had a publisher of meduza, and he probably would have ejected to -- objected to -- he was a they are a good the unitedut in states, they would say they are not. question right there. hi. intelligenceive
analyst. much of the conversation about hackers has been dominated about the election hacking, information warfare, and propaganda. the last couple of years, we have seen an increasing number of hacks in western europe in are remarkably sophisticated and growing, which are targeting structure and appeared to be almost someone testing how to cause mass disruption on a kinetic level. in the last year ukraine got hit i crash override, which is an application of -- which disrupted the iranian program. while we are seeing this disinformation and propaganda on the surface, is russia also investing heavily in these kinetic cyber weapons which could be deployed whenever they feel it was necessary? yes.urovsky: ok, thanks.
we now have time for one more question. let's go to this question right here. yes, please. gerd work,u for your sir. because of the science squadrons, are they word isg to the gru, there a special defense agency they are reporting to? mr. turovsky: yeah. squadrons,arate -- in minister , or some other part of the ministry of defense. >> so they are separate from the gru? mr. turovsky: no. one squadron is with the gru.
the other squadron works with the department other departments, other squadrons. >> all right. we have just come to the conclusion of the meeting. daniil.to thank we will all be looking forward to your book very much. thank you. mr. turovsky: thank you. [applause] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2018] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org]
>> the u.s. supreme court heard oral arguments this week over voting rights. the ohio case over whether the state can purge voters from registration rolls. watch that tonight at 9:00 eastern on c-span. congress is back on capitol hill tuesday facing a government shutdown a week from today. they may also